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1901 Canada Census Questions

The 1901 Census marked the fourth regularly scheduled collection of national statistics. It officially began March 31, 1901.

The enumerators were to count individuals at their usual place of habitation, with the head of the household to be listed first and followed by the remaining members of the household. It was the head of household's responsibility to provide the information about the household.

The population totalled 5,371,315 individuals distributed as follows: British Columbia (178,657), Manitoba (255,211), New Brunswick (331,120), Nova Scotia (459,574), Ontario (2,182,947), Prince Edward Island (103,259), Quebec (1,648,898), and the Territories (211,649).

Canada included seven provinces (British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island), two territories (Yukon Territory and the Northwest Territories), and one district (the District of Keewatin). The Northwest Territories was comprised of seven districts (Alberta, Assiniboia, Athabasca, Franklin, Mackenzie, Saskatchewan, and Ungava).

There were eleven schedules to the census. Only Schedules 1 and 2 were microfilmed.

Schedule 1 - Population

Column Question
To be numbered in the order of visitation (1-2)
1 Dwelling House (A count of the houses. To be numbered in the order visited by the enumerator)
2 Family or household (A count of the family or household. Two or more families that occupied the same house were to be numbered separately)
Personal Description (3-10)
3 Name of each person in family or household on March 31, 1901 entered surname first
4 Sex (M or F)
5 Colour (W=White (people of European descent) R=Red (Native Canadians) B=Black (people of African descent) Y=Yellow (people of Japanese or Chinese descent))
Children who were of mixed Caucasian and other heritage (that is, red, black or yellow) were to be designated as members of the appropriate non-white race
6 Relationship to head of family or household
The head of the family (or household or institution) was to be entered as such (that is, Head), with the remaining members of the group indicated through their relation to the Head (wife, son, daughter, servant, boarder, lodger, partner, etc.).
Those persons in an institution could be described as an officer, inmate, patient, prisoner, pupil, etc
7 Single, married, widowed, or divorced ( "s" for single, "m" for married, "w" for widowed and "d" for divorced)
8 Month and date of birth (To be noted through the first syllable for each month, except in the cases of May, June or July, which were to be written in full)
9 Year of birth (To be entered in full for each individual)
10 Age at last birthday (The number of years completed before March 31, 1901
For children under one year of age, fractions were used (for example, for 2 months, "2/12" was indicated).
Citizenship, Nationality, and Religion (11-16)
11 Country or place of birth. (For people born in Canada, the name of the province or territory and add "r" or "u" for rural or urban as the case may be. For people born outside of Canada, the name of the country of origin (for example, England, Scotland, Ireland, Germany, France, etc.))
12 Year of immigration to Canada (The year the person moved to Canada from another country)
13 Year of naturalization (If individuals had applied for their citizenship papers, but had not yet gained full citizenship, they were to be marked as "pa")
14 Racial or tribal origin (Generally traced through the father. Aboriginal people were to have their "racial or tribal origin" traced through their mothers, with the specific name of the First Nation entered)
15 Nationality (The word "Canadian" for those who lived in Canada and who had acquired rights of citizenship. For Non-Canadians, the country of their birth, or the country to which they professed allegiance)
16 Religion (The religion to which an individual claimed to belong written in full. Abbreviations were used if the name was too long.)
Principal Profession or Trade (17-21)
17 Profession, occupation, trade or means of living for each person (if retired, add "R". Only the main profession was to be recorded. The branch of industry, trade, etc. in which the person worked was to be given)
18 Living on own means (Lives on own income other than salary from work, i.e., annuities, pensions)
19 Employer
20 Employee
21 Working on own account
Wage Earner (22-27)
22 Working at trade in factory or in home ("F" specified work in a factory, "h" for work in a home, and "fh" for work in both factory and home)
23 Months employed at trade in factory
24 Months employed at trade in home
25 Months employed in other occupation than trade in factory or home (For those who were employed in an occupation other than their trade, or if an individual who usually worked at a trade was engaged in any employment)
26 Earnings from occupation or trade $
27 Extra earnings (from other than chief occupation or trade) $
Education and language of each person 5 years of age and over (28-33)
28 Months at school in year for those over 5 and under 21 years old.
29 Can read
30 Can write
31 Can speak English
32 Can speak French
33 Mother tongue (The individual's native language to be entered if the person spoke the language, whether fluently or not.)
34 Infirmities a. Deaf and dumb b. Blind c. Unsound mind (The degree of the infirmity needed to have reached the stage of incapacity to be noted. If infirmity dates from childhood add "from childhood")

Schedule 2- Buildings and lands, churches and schools

Column Question
Reference to Schedule 1
1 Page
2 Line
3 Place of habitation:
a. Name of municipality, township or parish
b. Range or concession, lot, or cadastral number
c. Street and house number
d. Other description
Houses (4-6)
4 In construction
5 Vacant
6 Inhabited
Institutions (7-11)
7 Special or legal name
8 Number of buildings
9 Number of families in house or institution
10 Number of rooms in house or institution for each family
11 Number of inmates in institution, exclusive of families, officers and employees
Real Estate Owned (12-18)
12 Grand total of acres
13 Number of town or village lots
14 Number of dwelling houses
15 Number of stores, warehouses, etc.
16 Number of barns, stables, and other outbuildings
17 Number of silos and capacity in cubic feet
18 Number of manufacturing establishments
Real estate leased or otherwise held (19-25)
19 Grand total of acres
20 Number of town or village lots
21 Number of dwelling houses
22 Number of stores, warehouses, etc.
23 Number of barns, stables, and other outbuildings
24 Number of silos and capacity in cubic feet
25 Number of manufacturing establishments
Church or place of worship (26-28)
26 Religious denomination
27 Number of communicants
28 Seating capacity of edifice
Sunday school (29-31)
29 Religious denomination
30 Number of officers and teachers
31 Number of scholars
Public school (32-37)
32 Number of rooms
33 Number of teachers
34 Number of scholars
35 Date of visit
36 The reason, if not enumerated, on first visit
37 Date when enumerated

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